Earlier this month, Renault's low-cost division Dacia announced plans to introduce the third-generation Duster in 2024. It'll be a completely new crossover by transitioning to the CMF-B platform used by many models sold by the Renault Nissan Mitsubishi alliance. To be manufactured in Mioveni, Romania, the affordable subcompact model has now been captured by car paparazzi undergoing testing while hiding a fully redesigned body.
It appears to be larger than the current model and boasts design cues from the Bigster concept. The latter will morph into Dacia's first C-segment model when it'll go on sale in 2025, with production to take place at the same Romanian factory. While the outgoing Duster is 4.32 metres (170 inches) long, its replacement will have room to grow considering the Bigster is going to stretch at around 4.6 metres (181 inches).
2024 Dacia Duster spy photos
Already featuring the full production body and final lights, the 2024 Duster has rear disc brakes, which haven't been installed on a Dacia since the company's original model. We're talking about the rear-wheel-drive, Renault 8-based 1100 sold between the late 1960s and early 1970s. Elsewhere, and provided the camouflage is not playing tricks on us, it appears to have "hidden" rear door handles akin to the Bigster.
The new Duster rides on 17-inch wheels wrapped in Continental 215/65 all-season tyres and continues to offer a generous ground clearance. The turn signals have finally been integrated into the side mirror caps while the wheel arches have a more squared contour to make the side profile look rugged. Some of the images show the individual lighting modules of the taillights while the front LED lights are also partially visible.
By switching to the CMF-B architecture, it means Dacia will have the ability to sell the Duster with hybrid powertrains, including a PHEV setup. Maybe not from day one, but a full hybrid is likely planned since the Jogger estate has already been electrified. Cheaper versions will stick with front-wheel drive while the higher-end versions will be offered with AWD.
The Renault Group is gradually moving away from diesels so it'll be interesting to see whether the no-frills SUV will keep its dCi unit. Another piece of the puzzle is whether there will be a pickup truck version this time around.